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Friday 19 February 2021

Circle of Cornelis Galle II & Pierre de Loisy II’s engraving, “Order of the Golden Fleece”, 1632

Unidentified printmaker from the circle of Cornelis Galle II (1615–1678) (based on the close connection of Cornelis Galle II with the Plantin Press in Antwerp where this print was published and stylistic similarities [see and Pierre de Loisy II (1619-1670) (based on Pierre de Loisy II’s role as illustrator for another publication [Vesontio Civitas Imperialis Libera Sequanorum Metropolis, 1618] by the same author for which this print served as the title page).

Order of the Golden Fleece, 1632, possibly after Peter Paul Rubens (aka Petrus Paulus Rubens; Rubenius) (1577–1640), title page to Jean-Jacques Chifflet‘s (aka Chiflet) (1588–1660) Insignia Gentilitia Equitum Ordinis Velleris Aure, published by Balthasar Moretus I (aka Balthasar Moerentorf I) (1574–1641) in Antwerp.

I understand that this publication arose from the Archduchess Isabella Clara Eugenia, Sovereign of the Netherlands, having given Chifflet the “responsibility to write the history of the Order of the Golden Fleece”—a mission purportedly designed “to keep him near her” (see Camille Sourget Librairie: offers an online view of this print in its context as published along with its full publication details:

The British Museum offers the following description of this print:

“Allegory of the origin of the Order of the Golden Fleece; at centre Jason holding the dead ram in his right hand and stepping onto a defeated dragon while leaning on his club; the Argonauts in a ship in left background and a tree with a scroll in right background; within oval decorated with the chain of the Golden Fleece; frame surrounded by decorative flames and with scroll at bottom”


Engraving on laid paper trimmed around the platemark and backed with a support sheet.

Size: (sheet) 20 x 13.9 cm; (image borderline) 19.5 x 13.5 cm.

Lettered on plate: (upper banderole) “PRETIVM CVRSVS AVREA PELLIS" (The price of our cruise is the golden coat); (oval banderole) “IGNEVS EST NOSTRIS VIGOR ET CAELESTIS ORIGO PRINCIPIBVS.” (Our princes have a fiery power and a heavenly origin); (lower banderole) "MERCES PRIMÂ DIGNA CARINÂ." (A wage worthy of the first ship).

Note: the translations for the Latin inscriptions (and many other details about this print) have been extracted from the exceptional essay by Andries Welkenhuysen (2007), “Aries seu Aurei Velleris encomium of Godefridus Wendelinus” (The Gulden Passer, vol. 85:

Condition: a strong and well-printed impression in excellent condition, trimmed around the platemark and laid onto a support sheet of archival (millennium quality) washi paper.

I am selling this amazing engraving showing Jason holding aloft with his right hand the golden fleece—a tiny one! —while simultaneously crushing the head of the Colchian dragon with his club with his other hand watched in the distance by his fellow Argonauts n their ship, the Argo, for the total cost of AU$245 (currently US$192.29/EUR158.39/GBP137.39 at the time of this listing) including Express Mail (EMS) postage and handling to anywhere in the world, but not (of course) any import duties/taxes imposed by some countries.

If you are interested in purchasing this title plate for descriptive explanations about the coats of arms of the eight grand masters of the Order of the Golden Fleece, please contact me ( and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.

This print has been sold 

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